What are you looking for?

Acharya Prashant
5 min readSep 22, 2020

The following is an excerpt from a samvaad (dialogue) session with Acharya Prashant.

Question: If I am honest, all the time I am looking for something, I don’t know why, or what. And I don’t feel good with that feeling, because all the time we are looking for outside. And I don’t know what I want to do or what I want? If you ask me that, I don’t have any idea. I don’t know what I am looking for. I want to be in peace only.

Acharya Prashant (AP): The question that we normally consider is — “What am I looking for?” In this question, the assumption is that there surely is something that I am looking for, that there exists something that I am looking for; the belief that something out there exists, that I really want and that will really satisfy my thirst, my desire. So, the assumed challenge is to figure out what am I looking for.

But we never consider the question, whether I am looking for something?

We ask, “What do I want?”

We do not ask, “Whether I want anything?” “Do I really want it?”

So, as long as there is this belief that there is something that one is looking for, one keeps traveling, going to places, searching, trying one thing, then the next — which appears logical — because you are looking for something, so you have to hunt for it, look for it.

Maybe one is not really needed to look for anything. And I say this with respect for your travels, the effort that you have put in searching. But, do not forget that whenever you look for something, you look ahead of yourself. You look into the future. You look towards others, you look into the world. Whenever you are looking ‘for’ something, that’s where you expect to find something. Outside, ahead in time, somewhere.

Maybe there is nothing that one is really looking for.

Maybe one is alright as one is.

Maybe it’s not needed to look for anything.

Maybe ‘looking for’ is not needed.

Maybe just ‘looking’ is sufficient.

‘Just looking’ means, you just have to look beyond this, all this — ‘this’, that is. You don’t have to do any mental activity.

In ‘looking for’ something,